A CHRISTIAN OUGHT TO BE A GOOD HATER

A CHRISTIAN OUGHT TO BE A GOOD HATER

 Michael Jeshurun

When I first read this quote, I thought it meant – ‘The truth is to hate those who hate the truth’, or a declaration of ‘Hate’ to all those who hate the truth. But that is not what it is saying. What it is really saying is that the Truth is hated by all those who hate the Truth!

Now who are these that hate the Truth? Just about everyone who comes into the world as a descendant of Adam! The psalmist confessed, “Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me”. [Psalm 51:5]. Again, “The wicked are estranged from the womb: they go astray as soon as they be born, speaking lies”. [Psa 58:3]. And the Master said, “And this is the condemnation, that Light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil”. [John 3:19].

Men may and do accept some aspects of truth while embracing other lies. Many condemn Abortion while condoning Idol worship. Some who decry Homosexuality would think nothing of advocating extramarital sex between consenting parties! But there is only one born of woman who was a lover of ALL TRUTH! Of him alone it could be said, “Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows”! [Psa 45:7]. Of all the so called holy men and prophets that walked the earth only He was truth personified. Unlike the others He not only taught us the truth but affirmed –“I am the Truth”! Only of Him did God the Father say, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye Him”! [Matt 17:5] He is the Lord Jesus Christ, God manifest in the flesh! [see 1Tim 3:16]

When He came into the world He was hated, persecuted and finally killed. They hated Him without a cause! They hated Him because He was the Truth, and men hate the Truth!

But there are others who loved Him and received Him as Lord. What made them do this? The work of God in their hearts! God took away their stony heart and gave them a heart of flesh. He sovereignly regenerated them and drew them to His Son! They did not love or ‘choose’ Him by their own free will but were made willing in the day of His power! [Psa 110:3] “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him”! And again, “No man can come unto me, except it were given unto him of my Father”. [John 6:44, 65]

These regenerated ones love God and His Truth because He first loved them. “We love Him, because He first loved us”! [1John 4:19]. Neither do they love some truth or most of the truth, but ALL TRUTH! And because they love all truth, they hate every false way! “O how I love Thy law! It is my meditation all the day….Through Thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way”! [Psa 119:97-104]

They especially hate beliefs and practices done in the name of their Lord who bled and died to save them! Christ-MASS being one of them!

Surely Christ-MASS is not some ‘unforgivable Sin’ that will send people to hell. But to know the truth behind Christ-MASS and willingly reject it surely betrays one’s identity. Not only does God open the eyes of his regenerated ones to the truth but gives them the will to take a stand for it. And the one cannot save without the other. “Just as weight cannot be separated from a stone, or heat from a fire, so cannot justification from sanctification”! [A.W.Pink]

As the Master said – “If ye know these things, happy are ye IF YE DO THEM”. [Jn 13:17] There is such a thing as ‘an external work of the Holy Spirit’ whereby men grasp the doctrines of God in their heads, but ONLY THE ELECT are enabled by the working of God both TO WILL AND TO DO HIS GOOD PLEASURE! [Phil 2:13]

“The Truth is Hate to those who Hate the Truth”

But what if the quote actually read “The Truth is to Hate those who Hate the Truth” as I initially thought it did. How true and Scriptural would that be?
In fact many would be amazed to know that it would be very Scriptural!

The loving Psalmist, the man after God’s own heart said –

“Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate thee? and am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them mine enemies”! [Psalm 139:21,22]

Commenting on this verse Spurgeon says –

“He was a good hater, for he hated only those who hated good. Of this hatred he is not ashamed, but he sets it forth as a virtue to which he would have the Lord bear testimony. To love all men with benevolence is our duty; but to love any wicked man with complacency would be a crime. To hate a man for his own sake, or for any evil done to us, would be wrong; but to hate a man because he is the foe of all goodness and the enemy of all righteousness, is nothing more nor less than an obligation. The more we love God the more indignant shall we grow with those who refuse him their affection. “If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ let him be Anathema Maranatha.” Truly, “jealousy is cruel as the grave.” The loyal subject must not be friendly to the traitor. And am not I grieved with those that rise up against thee? He appeals to heaven that he took no pleasure in those who rebelled against the Lord; but, on the contrary, he was made to mourn by a sight of their ill behaviour. Since God is everywhere, he knows our feelings towards the profane and ungodly, and he knows that so far from approving such characters the very sight of them is grievous to our eyes”. [C.H. Spurgeon Treasury of David]

In another place David says – “I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked’! [Psalm 26:5]
And again – “I have hated them that regard lying vanities: but I trust in the LORD”! [Psalm 31:6]

In the New Testament our own Lord, the Prince of Peace affirmed –
“If any man come to Me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple”! [Luke 14:26]

That is a pretty strong requirement! “If any man come to Me, and hate not ……he cannot be My disciple”! The word “hate” (in Greek ‘miseo’) has the meaning ‘hate or detest’. It is the same word used in Rom 9:13 where God says He hated Esau. Nevertheless the verse continues with “his father, and mother “ but the 5th Commandment orders: “Honour your father and your mother ……” (Exe 20:12) Now the Bible does not contradict Itself so the meaning of “hate” here is meant to emphasize that the LOVE (Agape) we must have for God and His Christ has to be so great that when we compare it with the love we have for our close relatives the latter would appear as “hate”.

The word ‘hate’ here falls into a category of “extreme language,” the language of absoluteness used to express a preference, and may refer to disattachment, indifference, or nonattachment without any feelings of revulsion involved. To seal this matter completely, let’s look at some parallel material which prove our point. The closest example comes from Genesis 29:30-1:

And he went in also unto Rachel, and he loved also Rachel more than Leah, and served with him yet seven other years. And when the LORD saw that Leah was hated, he opened her womb: but Rachel was barren. [Gen 29:30,31]
Here, “hated” is clearly used synonymously with one who is loved less. Let it be added that if Jacob hated Leah in a literal way, it is hardly believable that he would consent to take her as his wife at all. (See also Judges 14:16 and Deut. 21:15-17.)

Again a literal hate of the body would have us cutting it with razors or hitting it with blunt objects — an extreme practiced in some Roman Catholic Monasteries by devotees whipping themselves (Flagellation) as penance for their sins!

Therefore, Christ is saying that anyone following Him, making a commitment to the Christian way of life, must love Him more than family and friends, and even life itself. Our allegiance and commitment is first to Christ and His family before anything else.

But to return, when the Psalmist speaks of hating those who hate God and the Truth, it is not a hatred with a mind to cause harm but a preference to love and fellowship with those who are also lovers of God and the Truth.

In fact if you truly loved God and took a stand for His Truth, you cannot but be hated by those who hate the Truth! This same David said, “I am for peace: but when I speak, they are for war”. [Psa 120:7] Why so? Because the true saint does not seek for peace at the cost of truth! As John Owen rightly said – “For what peace in the Church without truth? All conformity to anything else is but the agreement of Herod and Pilate to destroy Christ and His Kingdom” And because our unsaved relatives and friends hate the truth their hatred towards us is inevitable.

The Master told His own brothers born to Mary, “The world cannot hate you; but Me it hateth, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil”! [John 7:7] If you who claim to be His disciple also testified against the Lie in this world like He commissioned you to, then you too would feel their hatred like He did!

The Master told His disciples, “If the world hate you, ye know that it hated Me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you”! [John 15:18,19]

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